3c2009Making_of_genetics

3c2009Making_of_genetics - Science and Technology in the...

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1 Science and Technology in the 20 th Century History 3c, Fall 2009 Week 2: Genetics and the uses of heredity Lecture 3: The making of genetics Ubiquitous gene talk
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2 The double helix as cultural icon and fetish object How can we explain that genetics has become such a pervasive science in the 20 th century? We will start answering that question by studying the early history of the science
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3 Overview 1. From institutional to natural inheritance 2. Inheritance as biological principle (Darwin, Galton) 3. Mendel 4. The making of genetics as a discipline 5. Morgan and the drosophilists 6. The triumph of Mendelism Genetics as a science is only about 100 years old. How did people think about inheritance before then? Inheritance as a legal term inheritance of properties and privileges How has heredity become a biological term? French revolution as turning point: abolition of hereditary privileges and creation of notion of natural inheritance in which all people participate Biology as a science created around 1800: natural inheritance as a biological principle 1. From institutional to natural inheritance
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4 (1) Inheritance in the medical context from hereditary diseases to the inheritance of predispositions of diseases (2) Discussions on human races colonial context/ moving of people castas system (3) Variation of plants and animals under domestication All these elements remain important in later discussions on heredity From institutional to natural inheritance cont. The castas was a 17 th century system of classification and social stratification of people based on descent used by the Spaniards in Latin America.
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5 Criollos - People of Spanish descent but born in Latin America Castizos - Persons with one mestizo parent and one criollo parent Mestizos - Persons with one peninsular parent and one indio parent. Cholos - Persons with one indio parent and one mestizo parent Mulatos - Persons of mixed peninsular and negro descent Indios - Amerindian inhabitants Zambos - Persons who were mixed indio and negro Negros - Blacks Peninsulares - persons of Spanish or Portuguese descent born in Spain or Portugal (1) Inheritance in the medical context from hereditary diseases to the inheritance of predispositions of diseases (2) Discussions on human races colonial context/ moving of people castas system (3) Variation of plants and animals under domestication All these elements remain important in later discussions on heredity From institutional to natural inheritance cont.
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6 Charles Darwin (1809-1882) Hereditary variation as basis for his theory of natural selection (1859) 2. Inheritance as biological principle In the course of the 19 th c heredity becomes an increasingly important principle in biology In The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication (1868) Darwin develops hypothetical theory of heredity ( pangenesis) body cells shed gemmules which collect in the reproductive organs prior to fertilization acquired characteristics are heritable
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This note was uploaded on 02/19/2011 for the course HIST 3C taught by Professor Porter during the Fall '07 term at UCLA.

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3c2009Making_of_genetics - Science and Technology in the...

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